Turkey on Thursday summoned the ambassadors and senior representatives of nine countries to condemn the closure of some European consulates in İstanbul due to security concerns, Agence France-Presse reported.
The United States and several European countries have advised citizens not to attend mass events and to avoid tourist hotspots in central İstanbul because of a heightened terrorist threat.
At least seven European countries have closed their İstanbul consulates to the general public as a precaution.
The US consulate remains open because it is not in the city center and is less vulnerable to a terrorist attack.
The security warnings came during a spike in diplomatic tensions linked to Turkey’s refusal to let Sweden and Finland join the US-led NATO defense bloc.
These have been exacerbated by protests at which an anti-Islamic extremist burnt copies of the Quran in Stockholm and Copenhagen last month.
Turkish officials have voiced growing frustration with the Western security alerts.
Ankara issued a travel warning for the United States and Europe in seeming retaliation last weekend.
A diplomatic source said the ambassadors and senior representatives of Belgium, Britain, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Sweden, Switzerland and the United States were summoned to the Turkish foreign ministry.
Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu on Thursday condemned the Western closures as an attempt to meddle in Turkey’s May 14 presidential and parliament election campaign.
“They are waging psychological warfare against Turkey,” Soylu told NTV television. “They are trying to destabilize Turkey.”
The chief spokesman for President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s ruling party accused the West of making “irresponsible statements.”
“Some embassies and consulates are making statements to raise concerns about our country’s security conditions,” party spokesman Ömer Çelik tweeted.
“This type of irresponsible behavior is unacceptable.”